Monday, October 20, 2014

Banged-up SCSU Bulldogs ‘must figure out how to win’ vs. Bethune-Cookman

ORANGEBURG, South Carolina -- The adage “time heals all wounds” may not necessarily apply for South Carolina State this week.

Even with an open date, the Bulldogs head into Saturday’s Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference matchup with 13/14th-ranked and defending co-champion Bethune-Cookman still feeling the worse for wear.

“I feel like I’m back in Great Branch with a Saturday afternoon baseball game trying to get nine (players) together so we can play,” Coach Buddy Pough said Monday at his press conference. “It is what it is. Hopefully, we can get some guys healthy by Saturday, but we are kind of broken up and ordinarily with the big open week that we had, you’d think we would be able to get some guys back. But right now, we are a little bit deeper into our injury list than I’d like to be.”

Several key players, including ...


Howard U. Homecoming 2014 - Highlights

Lady Rattlers nip Georgia to win Berry XC Invite

ROME, Georgia (Oct. 18)  –  The Florida A&M Women’s Cross Country team continued to ramp up towards the 2014 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championships Saturday with a sizzling win at the Berry (Ga.) College Invitational.

“I’m very proud of these ladies,” said a jubilant FAMU head coach Dr. Darlene Moore after the team’s performance over the 6K course, which yielded five Top 20 finishers, who all turned in personal bests to power the Lady Rattlers to a four point win (45 to 49) over the University of Georgia and the rest of the 24-team field.

Leading the way for the Lady Rattlers was junior Effiey Kosgei, who placed 3rd overall in 22:08.00, followed by Cynthia Chelelgo in 4th in 22:15.20.

Judith Kibii ran 6th in 22:41.60; QuanDra Shanks placed 14th in 23:48.00 and Phyllis Cheruiyot rounded out the FAMU Five with a 23:48.60 time, good for 18th overall.

Also competing for FAMU were Nicole Kvitkauskas (24:17.80) and April Polite (26:11.60).

WHAT’S NEXT: Dr. Moore’s Lady Rattlers will go for a threepeat in their next event, the 2014 MEAC Cross Country Championships at Dover, Delaware, hosted by Delaware State University on Saturday, November 1.



Sunday, October 19, 2014

Old friends FAMU's Blount and HU's McGhee reunite on field

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Most folks outside of the District of Columbia hadn't heard much about Howard quarterback Greg McGee until this season, but he and FAMU's linebacker Akil Blount have some history.

Both played AAU basketball while growing up in Pittsburgh, Pa. There might be some argument who was the best on the court, but Saturday afternoon Blount was clearly the one who walked away with something to talk about after the Rattlers stunned HU on its homecoming, 31-28.

It was their third meeting as collegiate football players. They won't meet again, though. Blount is a junior.

McGhee graduates in December, said he's enjoyed every one of their meetings.


Murraine: FAMU's win is one to enjoy for the moment

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Raise your hand if you were one of those FAMU football fans who got up Sunday morning and rushed to check the MEAC standings.

Ah, stop looking around to see who is watching.

It's OK. You should be feel pretty good about your Rattlers, although the road ahead will be very challenging.

FAMU is now 2-5 with a 2-1 conference record that puts it ahead of the bottom four teams.

Definitely this is when you want to savor the moment. Not just for spoiling Howard University's homecoming with a 31-28 victory.

But the way they jumped on the Bison early. The Rattlers showed speed that wasn't obvious during their early season losses – five straight.


TSU Defense Stout in 21-16 Loss to UTM

NASHVILLE, Tennessee -- The Tennessee State defense held UT Martin to just 210 yards, but the Tigers still fell to the Skyhawks, 21-16, on Saturday at Hale Stadium.

The loss dropped TSU to 4-4 overall, 1-3 in the OVC and marked the first three-game losing streak for the team since a four-game stretch in 2011.

Quarterback Mike German finished the game 18-of-36 for 341 yards, two touchdowns and one interception and it was his third straight game with over 300 yards passing.

Senior receiver Ryan Mitchell caught six passes and set a new-career best with 156 yards and added a touchdown.

Nick Thrasher and Ezra Robinson paced the defense with 11 and 10 tackles, respectively.

After a first quarter that featured only 97 total yards (27 for TSU), UT Martin (3-5, 2-3 OVC) finally broke the scoreless tie with Reuben Duckworth’s first career touchdown at the 11:33 mark in the second. Duckworth’s 10-yard carry was the seventh rushing score given up by TSU in the last three games.

The TSU offense broke out of its drought three plays later when German hit Ryan Mitchell with a 39-yard bomb. However, three Tiger penalties forced them to settle for a 34-yard Lane Clark field goal. The kick cut the UTM lead by four with six minutes to play in the half.

Tennessee State tried to put up more points before the break – German completed back-to-back passes for 40 yards – but TSU couldn’t quite get across the fifty and the second quarter ended with the score 7-3.

TSU was outrushed, 110-23, during the first 30 minutes and the Tigers averaged just 1.8 yards per carry.

Tennessee State started the next stanza on the wrong foot, as German’s first pass of the quarter was intercepted by UTM’s nose tackle Keith Jones and returned 42 yards for a touchdown. The score put the Tigers down, 14-3, with only three minutes gone in the second half.

The Tigers suffered more misfortune later in the quarter when Telvin Hooks fumbled on the TSU 12-yard line and UTM’s Tony Bell scooped up the ball. Jarod Neal connected with Corey Rogers on second down for a seven-yard score and UTM went up, 21-3.

A 26-yard toss from German to Weldon Garlington to begin the fourth quarter marked TSU’s first touchdown of the game and the Tigers added another when German found Mitchell for a 75-yard deep ball. The two scores put TSU down by just five, 21-16, with 4:37 to go.

The TSU defense could not get the UTM offense off of the field on its next series, and the Skyhawks ran out the clock.

Tennessee State held UT Martin to just 67 yards passing, but the Big Blue offense had five three-and-outs and was just 4-of-14 on third down.

TSU will hit the road for the team’s next contest and travel to Eastern Illinois for a matchup with the Panthers. Kickoff for that game is scheduled for Saturday at 2:00 p.m.

NOTES: The loss marked the first time since 1995 that TSU was defeated in back-to-back bouts in the Hole in the same season… Michigan State transfer Ezra Robinson set a new career-high with 10 tackles… With his 11 stops, Nick Thrasher is now second in school history behind coach Rod Reed with 309… German’s 314 yards move him into second place on TSU’s all-time passing yards list. The redshirt senior now has 7,331… German’s 75-yard connection to Mitchell was TSU’s longest play from scrimmage this season… Attendance was 6,738…


Fobbs sees room for improvement in GSU rout of UAPB

GRAMBLING, Louisiana  --
Broderick Fobbs graded his Grambling Tigers out at a "B-/C+" performance following a 63-39 homecoming win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

It's hard to believe a 5-0 start in the SWAC would warrant such an evaluation given where the Tigers (5-3, 5-0) were this time last year, but Fobbs shut the door on 2013 from the moment he left McNeese State to be the head coach at his alma mater.

"Maybe my bar is a little too high but sometimes people look at the score and think, 'they're really clicking,' but I think we can play better than that," Fobbs said. "(Pine Bluff) did a good job keeping the ball away from us so we had to make sure we possessed the football and kept our defense off the field in the second half."

Grambling came into the game planning to run anywhere from 90-100 plays, but a combination of offensive big plays and third down defensive woes allowed Pine Bluff to dictate a slower tempo.